Set amidst green plants, purple flowering trees, and a lush garden, Banllé Vegetarian Restaurant is a peaceful oasis in the noisy and dusty city of Siem Reap. Banllé caters to both vegetarians and vegans, but is known to have satisfied many a meat eater as well.
Banllé Vegetarian Restaurant prepares all of its dishes without fish sauce and many of its dishes without eggs or dairy. It orders free-range eggs from local farmers and grows spinach, morning glory, lettuce, eggplant, cucumber, and other vegetables in its organic garden.
Images clockwise from left: outdoor seating at Banllé Vegetarian Restaurant, Mushroom and Spinach Tart, and Banllé’s organic garden
I tried Banllé’s Green Apple Smoothie, Mushroom and Spinach Tart, Oven Roasted Eggplant with Gruyere, and Lime Pie. Consisting of green apple, cucumber, mint, and ginger, the green smoothie was sweet and refreshing. I was slightly disappointed by the mushroom tart’s runny consistency, cakey crust, and small number of mushrooms; the tart seemed to consist mainly of sautéed onions. On the other hand, Banllé’s roasted eggplant was outstanding. Flavored with sesame, soy sauce, and olive oil, and covered with scallions, sundried tomatoes, and a liberal helping of melted cheese, it was one of the most succulent eggplant dishes that I have tasted during my travels in Southeast Asia. I ended my meal with the Lime Ice Cream Pie, which achieved the perfect balance of tartness and sweetness. Frozen and cool, it was a great antidote to the Angkor heat.
Images clockwise from left: Lime Pie, outdoor seating and patio of Banllé Vegetarian Restaurant
With its verdant scenery and comfortable couches, Banllé Vegetarian Restaurant is a lovely place to pass a quiet afternoon. The food is nutritious and flavorsome and the servers are attentive and friendly. I will definitely eat there again the next time I am in Siem Reap.